Back issues. Like, back when it was a quarterly.

I’ve been publishing Argentfork since 2004, the year the Sons of Tito Francona broke the curse of the Bambino. Since then, I’ve eaten pig’s head, Samish oysters and Castelvetrano olives, drunk No. 209 gin, Cahors wine and New Belgium Tripel—and written about all of them. Dig in.

  • Kernels of truth—and illusion
    CORN Jul 06

    Kernels of truth—and illusion

    You have to stand back to take in all of Antonio Gaudí’s unfinished Sagrada Familia. Way back. Oceans. For it did not occur to me standing in, under, adjacent or atop the cathedral that the four spires of la Sagrada are simply four great, towering ears of corn.

  • Mediterranean oyster symphony
    OYSTERS Apr 06

    Mediterranean oyster symphony

    We entered for oysters and found them—chunks of black rocks steeping in sea water, set off by bags of sunny lemons. Bought two kilos for nothing, or next to it, and savored the bargain as if it were on the half-shell.

  • The gastronomical moi
    TASTES Jan 06

    The gastronomical moi

    The Auvergne cowboys smiled beneath winter caps and heifers breathed icy snot. Steam seeped off the grassy dung piling up in the town square. It was deepest foreshadowing.

  • The peanut farmer
    LEGACY Oct 05

    The peanut farmer

    In the near-spring of 1980, Barnett Asbury Poole dropped dead smelling, probably, of minnows and hair tonic. He fell like a great, big, acorn-rich oak from a random stick of lightning that you want to call bad luck or, sillier, fate.

  • Sorbets and other sorts
    SUMMER FRUITS Jul 05

    Sorbets and other sorts

    "Melon d’eau," said the North African gent who sold produce at our French market. His watermelons were fat and snake green. We selected one from the mass of globes. He lifted it with both hands and the bottom fell out, as if John Gotti had taken a ball bat to it.

  • Oranges and strawberries
    ORANGES Apr 05

    Oranges and strawberries

    My father-in-law, John, took us to a secret stash of his … off Thonotossassa Road, about ten miles outside Ybor City. We parked the rental car and entered a worn-out looking yard, ragged with rotten limbs, mossy sand and fire-ant piles.

  • Red, white and bleu
    BLUE CHEESE Jan 05

    Red, white and bleu

    Blue cheese is not unlike a wild pony, romping and stomping its way across the mouth at meal’s end. Attempt to rope it in with the last of a merlot or pinot and it may bolt on you: Nothing scares a tender red wine more fully than a ripe blue cheese.

  • Fallen fruit
    AUTUMN Oct 04

    Fallen fruit

    Much of the fruit lies rotting on the ground—it is a veritable Antietam of pear death, this ground, covered in mushy, black pear corpses. But so much more clings to the limbs of the tree, which hunches from the weight of such bearing.

  • Let us now praise famous gin
    THE MARTINI Jul 04

    Let us now praise famous gin

    Nothing self-promotes better than a Martini. All the Manhattans and Negronis and Americanos simply fade—I drink around them, nostalgic for liquors by other names, of other colors, but otherwise nonplussed. In the end, it’s gin.

  • Horchata, et cetera
    FIRST THINGS Apr 04

    Horchata, et cetera

    Horchata always intimidated me, gurgling in its tank like roiling milk, until I learned it was dairy at all but steeped rice. Then I learned that nothing is better for calming the mouth after a fiery batch of tacos. In Spain, it isn't rice but chufa that makes horchata.

  • Quelling the curiosities
    BODY + BLOOD Jan 04

    Quelling the curiosities

    Before I left my foodwriting job of one year for a sabbatical in the poorest part of France, I received a copy of their reprint of "The Curiosities of Food," Peter Lund Simmonds' magical account of the way the world ate when he exploring it in the mid-19th century.